- 9 years ago
- Wedding: June 2011
I’m married, y’all!! Still adjusting to seeing my name different on Facebook :). The day went beautifully; we had perfect weather, and so many people have come to us saying that it was one of the nicest weddings they’ve ever been at.
But anyway, that’s not what this post is about. This post is about the flowers! A bit of backstory: I adore flowers, particularly garden roses. Our venue came with a package deal that included, for $3 per person, centerpieces on the tables. Before we signed with the venue we visited the florist they had their relationship with, and guys, it was a disaster. Rude is an understatement. We were basically told that we “couldn’t have” any of the items I wanted. They had no pictures of their work to show us. So we politely went back to the venue and asked if they could remove the flowers from the package, which they very nicely obliged us on.
With a sour taste in my mouth on the way we’d been treated, instead of researching other florists in the area I decided to do it myself. I have a bad habit of doing a lot of things myself (and this wedding was a DIYpalooza! lol). I spent hours agonizing over the flowers on various websites before deciding to put all my eggs in one basket and order everything through fiftyflowers.com. For 8 centerpieces, 3 bouquets, and 5 boutonnieres, a little more than a month before the wedding I placed an order for:
60 stems of Pink Carmeline Spray Garden Roses
75 stems of Dinner Plate Dahlia Flower Powder Pink
72 stems of Cabbage Garden Rose Romantic Antique Pink
10 bunches Seeded Eucalyptus Flower
10 bunches Green Lisianthus Flower
72 stems of Peony Rose Peach Piaget
Total cost: $902.44
(Let it be noted that I never did receive a phone call confirming my order, but I did order late in the day on a weekend, and I had the confirmation email so I wasn’t too worried.) I also ordered some floral foam from saveoncrafts, and got containers from Ikea. A week before a wedding I had a voicemail from fiftyflowers: the pink carmeline spray roses and the peony rose peach weren’t available due to growing issues. After a bit of back and forth with fiftyflowers in which they suggested some replacements and I countered asking if others were available, we ended up replacing the Pink Carmeline with Creamy Peach Spray Garden Roses, and the Peony Rose Peach Piaget with Garden Rose Soft Pink Ohara.
We had a Sunday wedding and I wanted to make sure that the flowers were fully opened, so I set them to arrive on the Thursday before. I had to call fiftyflowers to confirm that they were out for delivery as I never got the promised emails, but I did get the out for delivery and confirmation of delivery emails for all the packages, and they were great on the phone. Soon a man with boxes arrived at the door. Some of the boxes were squished, so we had him note the worst one on his paperwork just in case there was damage to the flowers themselves (there wasn’t).
Thank goodness for my fiance; he helped me unpack all the flowers and put them in our Lowes buckets, and ran out for more buckets when my initial set of 8 wasn’t enough (we ended up with 14!). I used the best tool ever invented to strip the thorns and leaves from everything. Some roses did end up dropping their heads off, but that’s probably because I missed the directions saying to leave them wrapped up together for several hours after placing them in water (oops!). The only color issue is that the dahlias were all ivory, instead of tinged with powder pink, but it didn’t bother me. The living room looked like this (and smelled amazing! the Ohara had a wonderful scent to them):
As if thare weren’t enough flowers, I also picked up 6 stems of pink peonies from the grocery store (Genuardis at the end of the day, though I also visited Whole Foods and Trader Joes).
On Saturday my mother, sister, and aunt came over to ‘help’ with the flowers. We all understood beforehand that helping would involve them watching me put things together ;). I woke up pretty early (I had trouble sleeping and eating days before the wedding) and started working on the flowers; probably around 8am or so. We were done by maybe 3pm. It went So Fast! We had so many flowers left over that I ended up making two extra larger arrangements. I also made a small piece to place on the cake, and a few small mason jars of a single rose to place on various tables.
one of the bigger arrangements (guest photo):
bouquets! 2 bridesmaid and 1 bride:
The final centerpiece on the table (guest photo):
I’m in love. So many people (including those working for the venue!) asked who my florist was, and I was proud to say I’d done it myself. I know that DIY isn’t for everybody, but for us, it was completely the way to go.
If you’re thinking of doing flowers yourself, here are some tips:
- I ordered WAY too much eucalyptus. I had so much left over, and because we left for the honeymoon immediately after, there was no time to do anything about it. 10 bunches is a *lot*. Trust me ;).
- Have a good pair of clippers. I got mine from Lowes.
- If you have roses, get a thorn stripper. It’s a life saver.
- Dahlias have huge stems. Sometimes my clippers couldn’t go through it. Seriously; it looked like bamboo! Also, I think the dahlia would have benefited from being delivered one day later (as fiftyflowers suggests ;)). Some of the heads got a little wobbly on the actual wedding day, and were starting to look a bit under the weather. Luckily I had a lot left over from that as well.
- Figure out how you’re getting the flowers to the venue. I devised transportation boxes out of USPS priority boxes, and it worked out awesomely…everything fit perfectly in the back of my Honda CRV (with the rear seats folded up) and nothing fell over. If we’d had any more centerpieces or bouquets though, I would have been in trouble!
I hope this helps other brides looking to DIY flowers. All in all things probably cost me about $1,000. Not cheap by any means, but I got exactly what I wanted and had fun doing it ^_^.